Queensland sports minister Judy Spence has unveiled the first map outlining the construction area for the Townsville V8 Supercar race precinct that should become a new venue for the series next season.
Spence said that the designated area for construction of the multi-purpose Reid Park events precinct had been declared by gazette notice under the Motor Racing Events Act 1990, and declares the area for construction of the proposed V8 Supercar circuit and associated facilities.
“This map shows Townsville residents exactly where construction will be undertaken, to develop this world-class multi-purpose events precinct," she noted, “The declaration of this development area is the first big step towards transforming Reid Park into a raceway in time for the first V8 Supercar race next year.
“The Queensland government is committed to bringing this international event to Townsville. We are providing $14.61m towards the total precinct construction cost of $29.58m. In addition, we will contribute $2.5m annually for the first five years of the event to ensure it is a success for Townsville.
“Last month, I brought special legislation before the parliament so that the development of Reid Park could be completed in time for next year's series, and we will continue to work with V8 Supercars Australia, Townsville City Council and other stakeholders to ensure this event is one of the best in the world. With the construction footprint now finalised, we can progress the detailed design of the track and facilities for release in the coming weeks.”
Spence also said that a range of measures would be put in place during construction to ensure local residents incur as little inconvenience as possible, including restricting access only in specific areas where works are underway; keeping roads not affected by construction open and putting in place appropriate traffic diversions when roads are being used by or under construction.
Spence said suitable measures will also apply when the championships are held, with V8 Supercars Australia required to develop a traffic management plan for the duration of the event.
“It is estimated that the event will generate $10m a year in economic benefits for the Townsville region, with 130 full-time equivalent jobs created during construction," she reasoned, “A further 180 full-time equivalent jobs will be created as a result of staging the three-day event each year. Up to 70,000 people are expected to visit the city for the annual event, showcasing North Queensland to a massive audience, as the V8 Supercar Championship is the third most watched sport in Australia, behind cricket and the Australian Football League. In 2007 alone, almost 22 million Australian viewers tuned in to watch the V8 Supercar Championship Series.
“The series also attracts a potential international audience of up to 850 million viewers across 130 countries. This kind of coverage presents us with a great opportunity to promote Townsville as a tourism destination around the world. In this way, local accommodation and business operators that service the tourism industry will reap the benefits of this event all year round.”